Last week, I was onboard the second sailing to Cuba with Fathom Cruises. Fathom does cruising a little different - they have the focus of social impact travel. Their goal: combine the love of travel with the desire to make a difference.
They currently offer two itineraries: one is social impact through volunteering in the Dominican Republic, and the other includes people-to-people programs in three ports in Cuba - Havana, Cienfuegos, and Santiago de Cuba.
For Americans, travel to Cuba must still fall under a special classification. The most common reason for tourism travel is a people-to-people exchange. This means, as a traveler, you should be interacting with the local people and culture. Fathom includes these programs in their itinerary, and they are so fun and easy to do.
Traveling to Cuba via cruise has many benefits that a land tour cannot provide. You unpack only once, and get to enjoy the ease of getting from port to port in a floating hotel. Activities onboard the ship ranged from relaxing by the pool to jamming with local Cuban bands.
Between being on the ship to touring Cuba, I had a great week! Here is my rundown of how everything went…
Day 1: I boarded the ship with ease! The process of check- in, from signing my Cuba affidavit to getting my visa, was seamless. I was on board by 12:30pm to grab lunch and my stateroom was ready by 2pm.
Everyone was on deck around 4pm when we sailed away to the sound of Craze band playing lively tunes. That evening, I attended a lovely cocktail party with some new friends, and after dinner we had a brief orientation about what to expect from our time in Cuba and the tours we would be doing. I even squeezed in a dance class and learned some basic salsa moves!
Whether you go on an extravagant luxury cruise or find a great cruise deal, traveling on the high seas is a wonderful way to see the Mediterranean.
Cruises offer guests the chance to relax and unwind alongside the beautiful European coast. A vast array of Mediterranean cruises exist that can cater to each traveler’s needs and preferences. Below are just a few of the reasons why so many people choose a Mediterranean cruise when exploring southern Europe.
Mediterranean cruises often offer all-inclusive accommodations.
If you want a stress-free travel option that still allows you to experience all that the Mediterranean has to offer, ask your travel agent about a Mediterranean cruise. Cruises can provide you with all-inclusive amenities, making it easy for you to have fun and eat great food without having to constantly reach for your wallet.
Mediterranean cruises are extremely safe for families.
As any parent can attest, keeping track of a child can be difficult even in your own home, let alone in a foreign country. Mediterranean cruises offer parents the chance to enjoy themselves both with and without their children. While Mediterranean cruises offer plenty of family-friendly activities, many ships also provide babysitting services so moms and dads can have their alone time while the kids are safe and entertained.
Mediterranean cruises allow individuals to explore Europe with convenience.
Navigating a foreign city can be frustrating if you’re unfamiliar with the language or geography. Trying to do it all day everyday for a week or more can be downright exhausting. Instead of getting yourself into this situation, contact your travel agency about booking a Mediterranean cruise where you can choose to explore when you want. Cruises offer guests ample opportunities to de-board and roam European port cities with or without a guide. If you would rather sit back and enjoy Europe from your deck chair, you can do that, too.
Are you ready to set sail? Let Brentwood Travel handle all of the details of your Mediterranean cruise getaway. Our travel company can take care of your scheduling, accommodation, and budgeting requirements. For more information, call our St. Louis office at (314) 439-5700.
When you take time off of work to go somewhere with your loved ones, ask yourself: Do you want a vacation, or do you want to travel? On a vacation, you focus on relaxing, so you might take a cruise or spend time in the Caribbean lounging by the pool at an all-inclusive resort. Traveling, on the other hand, implies a more engaging, active type of trip.
When you travel, you might not stay in the same place the entire time. You might take a tour of different cities, or explore one place in depth, visiting all the historical sites there. Travel can be educational and intellectually stimulating, especially if you visit another country. You can challenge yourself to learn a new language and get to know a completely different culture. Above all, while traveling you will have experiences that you simply can’t have in your hometown.
At Brentwood Travel, we can help you design the trip of your dreams. Whether you want to go on a river tour or Europe or an Alaskan cruise, we can take care of all the details so you are free to enjoy yourself. To speak with one of our travel agents, call us today at (314) 439-5700.
NOTE: Content originally posted by Viking Cruises.
From medieval Nuremberg to fabled Budapest, Viking's inspiring 10-day Bavaria to Budapest journey highlights the rich treasures and stunning beauty of the Danube. You will learn how to dance the Viennese Waltz and take in the atmosphere of Budapest′s Café Gerbeaud. You will stroll along grand boulevards such as Vienna′s Ringstrasse and see one of the largest organs in the world in St. Stephen′s Cathedral in Passau, Germany. A post-cruise extension in Budapest allows you to delve deeper and linger longer—experiencing the city′s vibrant cultural scene, various architectural styles, savory goulash and long soaks in its renowned thermal baths.
Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines
Cruising is the perfect activity for every member of the family! That is why taking a family reunion cruise is such a good idea. If you are in charge of planning your family reunion luxury cruise, talk to your travel agent and make sure you:
Choose the Right Location for All Ages
Most reunions gather together family members of all ages. As you choose your ideal family reunion cruise, make sure the ports of call offer fun activities for everyone. For example, a tropical destination offers a romantic atmosphere for young couples, a relaxing destination for older adults, and plenty of fun water activities for kids and families.
Make Sure the Cruise Is Affordable
Speak with some of your family members early to get a feel for everyone’s budget. Discuss your budget with your travel agent to find the perfect destination for all family members. While Alaska may be your dream cruise destination, a tropical cruise during an off-season may work best with budgets. You should also speak to your travel agent about possible group discounts and other amenities onboard, such as private dining opportunities for your group.
Give Everyone Plenty of Notice
You’ll need time to plan the reunion, but your family will need time to plan their trip as well! Make sure to give everyone plenty of notice so that they can enjoy the family reunion cruise. Consider creating a webpage up to two to three years in advance with information about potential dates, prices, and locations.
Plan your family reunion cruise with the help of Brentwood Travel in St. Louis. We can help you find the perfect all-inclusive cruise that every member of your family will love. Take a look at our website or give us a call today at (314) 439-5700 to start planning your next family vacation.
Do you know what place with the shortest name in the world?
It’s actually a ten-way tie! There are ten places in the world with names consisting of one single letter.
Among them are Å in Norway, Ö in Sweden and Y in both Alaska and France. See the full list here.
On the other hand, the longest place name belongs to Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, a large village on the island of Anglesey in Wales.
Apparently the name wasn’t always as lengthy. According to tour guide Dave Fox, "Originally the town had a shorter, easier to pronounce name: Llanfairpwllgwyngyll. In the 1880s, in a joking attempt to attract tourists, a tailor added the rest of the syllables, bringing the total length to 58 letters, including four letter L's in a row."
MOON PALACE JAMAICA GRANDE - Photo courtesy of Palace Resorts
Have you recently booked a romantic getaway or family vacation to Jamaica? Jamaica is a wonderful vacation destination with natural views and fascinating cultural experiences, and your travel agent can help you choose the top destinations for your trip. As you begin packing for your time of tropical relaxation, you can look forward to experiencing:
Jamaica is the birthplace of reggae music, so expect to hear a lot of steel drums during your travelling. Part of vacationing in a new country is being immersed in the local culture, and reggae music is an essential aspect of the Jamaican identity. Ask your travel agent about concerts and events happening in Jamaica during your stay. The variations of reggae music include rock, ska, and traditional reggae. Attend a reggae concert in Jamaica for a unique experience that you and your loved ones will remember for a lifetime!
Another wonderful aspect of vacationing in a different country is dining on the unique cuisine. You may frequently see Jamaican Jerk Chicken listed on restaurant menus, but there is nothing like tasting authentic Jamaican cuisine! The Jerk seasoning enhances the smoky flavors of any meat you choose for dinner or lunch. You may even enjoy the seasoning enough to purchase it for your own use at home! Being located so close to the ocean is also ideal, because you can enjoy oceanfront restaurants that serve fresh fish.
To get around the island on your Jamaican vacation, expect to hail many taxis. Although car rentals are available through Brentwood Travel, it’s most convenient for tourists to use taxis during their stay. Travelling on the Jamaican roads can be confusing, especially because vehicles drive on the opposite side of the road. The best solution for your travels to the ocean or nearby restaurants is to walk or hail a Jamaican taxi.
For additional tips on planning your Jamaican vacation, call Brentwood Travel at (314) 439-5700. Our travel agents will assist you with booking flights, hotels, and activities with our travel deals. We also provide luxury cruises and romantic honeymoon getaway packages.
If you’re getting ready to go on a cruise ship vacation, congratulations! You’re in for a world of exciting new experiences and a whole new take on the word “relaxation.” Booking your vacation through a travel agency is the best way to get all-inclusive deals on cruises to a variety of fascinating destinations. As you start to prepare for your trip, you’ll need to consider what clothes to bring on your cruise. Keep reading for tips on what women should wear on a cruise ship vacation.
A little bit of outfit planning can go a long way when you’re getting ready to go on a cruise. If you are one of the many people embarking on a cruise to kick back and relax, be sure to bring clothing that will protect you from the sun. Don’t forget to pack sunscreen, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses—especially if you’re heading to tropical climes! The winds can pick up at night on the water, so bring a light sweater or jacket to throw over your shoulders as you stargaze. Women who want to keep active on board the cruise ship should pack a few workout outfits so they can take advantage of exercise classes.
Evening Entertainment Ensembles
The fun on a cruise ship doesn’t stop when the sun goes down. There are many choices for dining and entertainment on board, so pack a few dress-casual outfits that can work for a variety of situations. Check with your travel agent ahead of time to find out if there are any black-tie events, and be sure to pack a cocktail dress with a pair of fun heels!
Part of the excitement of being on a cruise is not just on board the ship—you’ll also get to visit great destinations! Consider the weather of your destination, and always remember to pack a pair of comfortable shoes for exploring on land.
Brentwood Travel in St. Louis has been in business since 1957, specializing in leisure travel on land and by sea. Call us at (314) 439-5700 to inquire about our luxury cruise deals. You could soon be sailing away on your very own cruise!
With the right amount of planning and a helping hand from your travel company, you and your family or friends can enjoy a luxury cruise to an exciting destination. If you have not been on a luxury cruise in the past, you may not know where to begin once you sit down at your travel agent's desk. Here is a helpful look at what you need to know about planning a cruise vacation:
Begin by Choosing a Destination and Timeframe
The first step to take is to determine when you want to leave and where you would like to go. One of these variables may dictate the other, as certain locations such as Europe and Alaska are best to visit when the temperatures are relatively mild. If you're hoping to grab a great cruise deal, however, you may want to talk to your travel agent about booking out of season.
Browse Extensively for the Best Deals
Before booking a luxury cruise, consult with an experienced travel agent in order to get the best possible price. Travel agents know just where to look in order to find the most attractive cruise deals and can assist you in arranging inexpensive flights to and from your cruise's port of departure.
Schedule Your Optional Activities
From snorkeling on a Bahamian cruise to touring the many sites of Italy on a European cruise, there are a number of activities you can enjoy when your cruise ship docks. It's important that you browse the various excursions offered by your cruise well ahead time as they may require a reservation.
The friendly travel agents at Brentwood Travel in St. Louis can answer any questions you may have concerning cruise vacations. In addition to putting together custom cruise packages, we can also help you arrange land tours, overseas excursions, and hotels. Call us at (314) 439-5700 to learn more about our travel services.
Finding an all-inclusive vacation is a great way to plan a trip. Although these kinds of trips keep you from planning a lot, there are still certain unexpected situations that can arise. Use this guide to figure out what to do if a medical emergency occurs while you are traveling overseas:
Get a Checkup at Home
Prepare for your trip by checking on your health before you even leave home. Make an appointment with your regular doctor to get a checkup before your trip. This will help you ensure that you are in good health so you can avoid unnecessary illnesses before you go.
Determine If Your Insurance will Cover You
Some insurance policies pay for medical attention that you receive in other countries. Read through your policy before you go to figure out whether or not you are covered for your trip. If you are not, you should find a supplemental insurance that will keep you covered while you are gone. You can talk to your travel agent about special insurance you can purchase to ensure that you are safe if something should happen.
Leave Your Information with the State Department
If you register your trip with the State Department before you leave, you will have easier access to the American Embassy in your vacation destination. If the Embassy knows that you will be in the country, they can send work back home if there is an emergency. They can also give you information about doctors and hospitals in the area where you plan to travel.
Brentwood Travel is here to help you plan all aspects of your next vacation. With all-inclusive packages and cruise deals, we make it easy to take trips you want and save money while doing it. To learn more about our travel planning services, visit us online or call (314) 439-5700.
Brentwood Travel Vacation Experts
Serving Greater St. Louis since 1957, we specialize in cruises, all-inclusive vacations, tour packages, honeymoons, and group travel.